Willow (2022) is a fantasy series taking place 17 years after the defeat of Queen Bavmorda as the sorcerer Willow is once again called upon to protect Elora Danan. All episodes are streaming on Disney+.
Queen Sorsha rules over Tir Asleen and her twin children, Kit and Airk are being raised for the throne. However, when mysterious creatures called the Gales, kidnap Airk and take him to the Crone, a rescue party is formed.
Kit travels along with her best friend Jade, her father’s former squire, Boorman, the prince of Galldoorn, and her husband-to-be, Graydon, and the girl who fell in love with Airk, Dove.
Sorsha tells them to Willow since he will know what to do and when they meet him, he recognizes Dove as Elora Danan, the future empress of Tir Asleen.
They set on a treacherous journey to find the Immemorial City to rescue Airk as Willow trains Elora in magic along the way. Their quest is not without peril and they are constantly faced with adversity but they always manage to overcome it.
Warwick Davis is brilliant as the older, cranky Willow in a role that is certainly different in tone from his original portrayal. His performance is well-balanced between silly and focused mentor to Elora and the rest.
Ellie Bamber plays the grown-up Elora Danan and she is absolutely charming in the series. She occasionally occupies the role of damsel in distress but soon shows the fortitude of a hero as she begins to accept her identity.
Ruby Cruz is one of the standouts as Kit Tanthalos. She is meant to be a princess and one of the heroes but Cruz embodies a young character who has to go through much emotional growth before she can take her place as one.
Tony Revolori is wonderful as Prince Graydon, a character who shows maturity beyond his years but is also clueless on several matters. He provides good support and endears himself to the audience.
Amar Chadha-Patel is responsible for the bulk of the comic relief in his role as Thraxus Boorman. He’s got brilliant timing and he also displays moments of emotional intensity when required.
The story is well-written and adapted for a modern audience. The script is splendid and the cast does a magnificent job with what they’re given.
The directors maintain a consistent balance in tone throughout and ensure the actors mesh together well and represent the right emotions during any particular scene.
The special effects and technical departments responsible for the visual elements of the series have done amazingly well with the costumes, the makeup, and the depiction of magical spells. Elora’s training sequence across the Shattered Sea is magnetic.
The soundtrack is tailored impeccably for the fantasy genre while there are some great song choices to end each episode on a hook that only serves to increase the excitement for the next one.
While the story hasn’t relied too much on the original film, there are several moments where providing more context would have been appreciated. Watching the film isn’t essential but will definitely plug a few holes for audiences of the series.
Willow (2022) is a sequel series that does not rest purely on nostalgia and does a lot of leg work to tell a new and engaging story to the audience. With a host of characters that work together exquisitely, the series takes the audience on a magical journey that is thoroughly enjoyable.
Director: Stephen Woolfenden, Debs Paterson, Philippa Lowthorpe, Jamie Childs
Date Created: 2022-11-30 13:30